Earthcare Ministry

The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof. (Psalm 24:1)

Earthcare Mission Statement and Goals

Our mission:

To serve Jesus Christ, by being good stewards of the Earth.

Our goals:

  1. To examine what the Bible says about our relationship to, and responsibility to care for, God’s Creation.
  2. To encourage Christian earth care ethics.
  3. To reach out to others interested in caring for the earth.
  4. To involve our children, and pass on to them a Christian earth care ethic.
  5. To provide an avenue of spirituality — connecting to God by attending to God’s Creation.

Earthcare Missions

Time for Reflection and Planning

We gather together once a month: to reflect on the Scriptures, to think about issues of earth care, and to plan our work.

Energy Conservation/Fighting Global Warming

It is now abundantly clear that Global Warming is upon us, making energy conservation a top priority. We encourage our members, and our local community, to be more frugal in the use of energy. We have members who have:

  1. Converted to compact florescent lighting.
  2. Installed geothermal heat pumps.
  3. Installed solar panels
  4. Bought energy efficient cars and appliances.
  5. Participate in New Jersey’s Clean Power Program (http://njcleanpower.com/).

We have increased the energy efficiency of the church building by adding additional insulation and we have reached out in our community by offering our friends and neighbors free compact florescent bulbs.

Outings

We run an active outings program, with at least one outing a month. Our outings include, hikes, canoe trips, bike trips, bird watching, beach plum picking, and more.

Litter Pickup

Litter is a problem everywhere you look. We participate in several local litter pickup projects. We have cleaned up at the Hamilton/Trenton/Bordentown Marsh (http://www.marsh-friends.org/). We have cleaned up here in Springfield township with our neighbors during Pride in Springfield Day.

Protection of Grassland Bird Habitat

Grassland birds are among the most threatened bird species in New Jersey. Grassland habitat is disappearing as pastures are converted to subdivisions, and more intensive farming use. We are working to protect habitat for grassland bird species on the Burlington County owned “Old Sod Farm” on route 206 here in Springfield township.

In the spring and summer of 2006, we discovered breeding populations of seven threatened grassland bird species on the site (Grasshopper Sparrow, Savannah Sparrow, Bobolink, Eastern Meadow Lark, Spotted Sandpiper, Kestrel, and Dickcissel). We collected data on the number of breeding pairs of each species, and nominated the site for consideration as an Important Bird and Birding Area (IBBA) with New Jersey Audubon (NJA).

NJA now recognizes the site as the “Mercer/Old Sod Farm Bird and Birding Area.” Unfortunately Burlington County has denied us access to continue monitoring the bird populations on the site. However, we are able to do some monitoring from the bordering roads. We will continue to work to urge the county to protect the habitat of the threatened bird species on the site (http://www.njaudubon.org/Conservation/IBBA/.

Horseshoe Crab Protection

We are participants in the campaign to restore the population of horseshoe crabs in the Delaware Bay. Protecting horseshoe crabs will help to restore threatened populations of shorebirds, such as Red Knots, that depend on crab eggs for food during their migration stops in Jew Jersey (http://www.njaudubon.org/Conservation/HSCrabAlert.html).

Recycling and More

The church has implemented a computer printer ink cartridge recycling campaign and we encourage the use of non-throwaway mugs, plates, and utensils at church functions.

Fair Trade Coffee

We offer fair trade coffee for sale at the church. Fair trade coffee is coffee that allows its growers in Central and South America to get a better price for their product, while at the same time encouraging earth friendly measures, such as growing coffee plants under a partial forest canopy (http://www.equalexchange.com/).

Bird Houses

Our Youth Group has constructed numerous bird houses for placement in the community. The boxes at the church are currently occupied by House Wrens and Tree Swallows. We partnered with the Northern Burlington High School Science Club and the Burlington County Soil Conservation District to place five tree Swallow/Blue Bird boxes at the Conservation District’s new office building on Jacksonville-Jobstown Road.

Through (Christ Jesus) God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross. (Colossians 1:20)